Tag Archives: ICP

Shubha Sankranthi (2017)

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Shubha Makara Sankranthi to all our readers!

Whether you call it Makara Sankranthi, Lohri, Magh Bihu, Ghughuti, Pongal, Sakraat, Khicheri, Saaji, Suggi, Tirmoori, Uttarayan or “the transition of the sun into the constellation capricorn“, we wish you all a very Happy Harvest Festival!

Part of celebrating what unites us is understanding the beauty of the variety. Sanskrit is the language that unites us and Devanagari the most accessible to us, yet greetings come in many languages and many scripts. This year’s is written in the superfun script of the Odias of Odisha (ancient Kalinga, Utkala, & Oddra). To know how they celebrate today, here is a must follow handle or two for all things Odia, including ICP’s own @Itssitu, who was featured last year with her article on Odisha Fashion.

Pongal-greetings-tamilFrom Odisha we go to Tamil Nadu and a particularly emotive Pongal, where the great tradition of Jallikattu is presently prohibited. One need not participate or even be a fan of a tradition that is important to a different socio-economic group (in this case rural), but it’s important to respect all traditions, particularly when the animal is not harmed and is in fact treated as part of the family. Jallikattu is neither Spanish Bullfighting nor Cowboy Rodeo. The animal is safe, well-treated, and it is the unarmed players who are taking the risk given the powerful bull horns and hooves. It may be more martial than most may handle, but when the animal is treated well, it’s yet another part of festival fun.

JALLIKKATTU - PONGAL FESTIVAL'S SPECIAL BRAVE ART EVENT OF TAMIL PEOPLE - Art by Anikartick,Chennai,TamilNadu,India
Art by Anikartick

For some, Makara Sankranthi is about flying kites, for others it is about drawing Kolam(Rangoli) or playing Jallikattu, and for still others, it is a brilliant bonfire, symbolising a fresh start and personal cleansing.

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Punjab’s  Lohri (like Bhogi in Andhra’s 4 day Sankranthi) is a great utsav of aag. It is celebrated by Punjabis the world over, and symbolises that spirit in a different way. And yet, the same voices who show no concern for say trees on Christmas, suddenly do when it comes to Lohri (leave aside New Years Eve vs Crackerless Diwali).

Do what you can to preserve the tradition and petition and protest peaceably. Use facts, logic, and calm patience to make the case and point out double standards. Some connect to their culture through intellectual endeavours, others through philosophical inquiry, but most through their traditions and festivals (and the delicious cuisine that goes with them).

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Makara Sankranthi is not just a Pan-Indian, but a Pan-Indic festival, and is celebrated with great gusto by our brothers in Nepal.

So whether you say Sankranthi Shubhkamnayein, Shubheccha, or Shubhakaankshaalu, from all of us at ICP, we wish you the very best!

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Shubha Dasara (2016)

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Happy Vijaya Dasami, Happy Durga Pujo, and Shubh Dussehra! On this Tenth Day of Victory, Durga Mata defeated Mahishasura and Bhagvan Ram defeated Ravana.

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Whether in Kathmandu or Kanyakumari, whether it through Raas-Garba or Bhajans, hope you all enjoyed the Nine days of Navaratri. May this Tenth Day usher in victory for good over evil. From all of us at ICP, Happy Dasara!

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Shubha Krishna Janmashtami (2016)

krishnashtami2016From all of us at ICP, Happy Sri Krishna Janmashtami! Shubha Janmashtami! Janmashtami shubhkamnaye!

For those of us who know he was no mere myth, but left this Earth in 3102 BCE, this day is especially sacred, as a reminder of the validity of the Mahabharata’s message.

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Struggles against Adharma are there now more than ever. Even our traditions stemming from Krishna’s life are not being spared. What do the people do?

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It is why the time has come for people to not just sing “Hare Krishna”, but to take a page out of the Karma yogi’s book and do their karma. Between aggressive and passive is assertive. Learn from Sri Krishna and understand how to work together to effectively and legally preserve your interests, traditions, culture, and above all, preserve Dharma.

And remember, whatever the odds against you, Yatho Krishna tatho Dharma. Yatho Dharma, tatho Jayaha! Jai Shri Krishna!

 

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ICP Celebrates its 1year & India’s 70th

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Hard to believe it’s been 1 year for Indic Civilizational Portal, let alone 70 years for India. But with the passage of time comes occasion for both celebration and reflection.

1 years is both a short and long time for a website. The body of work produced by a group of individuals is always more interesting and meaningful than just that of one person. More importantly, the dreaming of common dreams and construction and implementation of a common vision is the true measure of not only a Dharmic people, but a competent one.

Due to outstanding teammates, its been possible to tackle a vast array of issues spanning from Women’s Empowerment to the Science of Computation. The real task, however, is whether Bharat, and those who make pretence to being part of its elite, can do the same.

One young lady over at our daughter site, Andhra Cultural Portal, has taken a step towards doing the same…and has taken out her metaphorical pen to do just that. Here is a wonderful message for those who would rather sit in their cozy salons and talk shops than to plan and do something useful in the common interest.  Hope this inspires at least a few to hear the clarion call and take up the mantle of praja dharma.

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From all of us at ICP, Happy Indian Independence Day, Shubha Swatantra Dinotsava, and here’s to many, many more!

Shubha Sri Rama Navami

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Happy Rama Navami! Shri Rama Navami Shubhkamnayein! Jai Shri Ram!

It’s been quite the back to back celebration of holidays, but none is more beloved than the day of the birth of our most beloved figure.

Born on the 9th day (Navami) of the Month of Chaitra per the Hindu Lunar Calendar, he is the Seventh Avatara of Lord Vishnu in this Manvantara. He is the ideal man, the ideal husband, the ideal brother, the ideal father, and the ideal king.

Ignorant revisionists criticize his actions, but forget that for a king, his subjects come even before his own family. As Rama was the polar opposite of individualism and selfishness, the small, self-interested person of the Kali era has difficulty understanding the concept of tyag, self-sacrifice, that he and his wife, brothers, and sisters-in-law all represent.

Strength with Gentility, Valour with Compassion, Knowledge with Wisdom, Power with Restraint, Wealth with Charity, Victory with Magnanimity, Achievement with Humility,  Obedience with Conscience, Authority with Love, Companionship with Responsibility, he is the very embodiment of Virtue and Grace.

May his qualities ever inspire us.

Happy Sri Rama Navami. May this blessed day of Bhagavan Rama’s Birth and Marriage bring tidings of happiness, prosperity, and blessedness. Let the message of Maryada Purushottam, the Shiromani of the Raghus, the Best of Bharatas, resound throughout the ages:

Dharma Protects those who Protect it.

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Puthandu Vazthukkal & Vishu Ashamsakal

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From all of us at ICP, Vishu Ashamsakal! Puthandu Vazthukkal! Happy New Year to Malayalis and Tamils alike.

At last, we complete the cycle of Indic New Years (the exception of course being our Gujarati friends). The Solar Calendar New Years are celebrated today. From Yugadi to Vaisakhi to Vishu/Puthandu, we see just how closely all these calendars (varshapada) coincide.

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Best wishes to all of you, and Happy New Year!

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Shubha Vaisakhi

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From all of us at ICP: Shubha Vaisakhi! Happy Baisakhi! Baisakhi di lakh lakh badhai! Shubho Nabo Borsho! Pana Sankranthi ra Subheccha! Shubh Jude Sheetal! Happy Bihu!

The other half of the assorted New Year’s of Bharatavarsha fall this well. Though the majority are today. We have two more tomorrow.

Today is most famously the Baisakhi Mela of Punjab, celebrated vivaciously by Sikhs. It is the Harvest Festival, and a time of great happiness.

In Vanga, that is the Bengal region, it is referred to as Pohela Boisakh.

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In Utkala/Kalinga, that is Odisha, it is called Pana Sankranthi, and is celebrated with a delicious sacred drink of the same name.

Maithilis ( the people around the region of ancient Mithila, Bihar/Nepal) call it Jude Sheetal.

The rest of Nepal celebrates Vikram Samvat. Their New year refers to the Vikrama Era of King Vikramaditya Panwar of Ujjain. This day begain in 57 B.C.E, and the New Year for most Nepalis begins this day.

Also, the Sinhalas of Sri Lanka celebrate Aluth Avarudda today, which is their New Year. Tulus of the Tulu region of Karnataka celebrated Bisu today.

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This completes the New Year’s Celebrations for all Bharatiyas using the sidereal calendar (except our fabulously wealthy Gujarati siblings). The Solar Calendar New Year festivals remain.

Shubha Vaisakhi! Happy Baisakhi!

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Shubha Yugadi

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From all of us at ICP, Shubha Yugadi, Shubh Chaitra Shukla Pratipada, Happy Ugadi, Shubh Thapna, Cheti Chand ki Shubhkamnayein, Gudi Padwa Shubheccha, Happy Sajibu Nongmapanba, Shubh Navreh, and finally Ugadi Subhashayagalu and Subhakaankashalu!

Ugadi comes from the Sanskrit term Yuga Adi, or new era.

In Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh & Telangana, Karnataka, and Goa it is celebrated as part of the sidereal (luni-stellar) calendar. In the land of Shivaji it is called Gudi padwa.

In Rajasthan, some communities notably celebrated Thepna to mark the same. In Kashmir, Hindus celebrate Navreh. Most of North India and Nepal mark it as Chaitra Shukla Pratipada.

Sindhis celebrated Cheti Chand as their New Year due to the importance of their Rashtra deva Jhulelal.

If we missed any, let us know in the comments!

While the Gujarati calendar celebrates New Year on/around Deepavali, and the Solar Tamil Calendar usually a few weeks after us, the Telugu/Kannada/Marathi New Year is based on the sidereal calendar (combination of Lunar, Solar and Stellar positions), and begins on this day.

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Today we mark the arrival of the year 5118 (Kali Yuga reckoning), in this 28th Chaturyuga of the 7th Manvantara (Vaivasvata) in Sveta Varaha Kalpa.

As the name suggests, Durmukhi will be a year of changes, requiring a resolute face in the wake of the bhayanika. Many have turned from the path of Dharma, especially many who claim to support it. Therefore, mankind too must be prepared for the days ahead to move away from materialism and pettiness and remember spirituality and common goodness.

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In many parts of India today it is common for ladies to do Rangoli/Muggu/Kolam as a mark of auspiciousness. Please see Shivoham’s excellent article on the topic.

Here is our Post from Andhra Cultural Portal explaining the Festival and its Traditions in detail, from the Telugu point of view. Those from other parts of Bharatavarsha are welcome to share below.

Whatever, wherever, and however you celebrate, Best Wishes to all of you!

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